Sage Grouse Initiative
New Agreement in Montana Further Enhances Sage Grouse Conservation Efforts
NRCS, Montana and the Soil and Water Conservation District of Montana, Inc. came together today to sign an agreement that aligns and coordinates conservation efforts that restore and protect habitat for the at-risk bird. To celebrate this new partnership, SGI unveiled a new publication, which shares the stories and successes of conservation on private lands.
Read the press release.
Download publication. (PDF, 9MB)
About 40 percent of sage grouse habitat occurs on privately owned lands. NRCS and its conservation partners in 11 western states have worked to improve sage grouse habitat for some time.
The NRCS Chief built on these efforts by declaring the Sage Grouse Initiative a national priority. NRCS continues to coordinate with ranchers to improve habitat for this at-risk bird.
The same conservation practices that promote healthy grazing lands also benefit the sage grouse and other wildlife.
The same factors that negatively affect sage grouse also affect the sustainability of native grazing lands:
- Land fragmentation
- Invasive species
- Unsustainable grazing systems
- Conifer encroachment
Farmers and ranchers can proactively work to conserve the sage grouse and help keep it from being listed under the Endangered Species Act (ESA).
NRCS Farm Bill conservation programs, including the Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP) and the Agricultural Conservation Easements Program (ACEP), are helping ranchers improve habitat for the sage grouse.
The core NRCS conservation practice for Sage Grouse Initiative is 645 - Upland Wildlife Habitat Management (PDF,57KB).
Visit the Sage Grouse Initiative website.
USDA Bi-State Commitments for Greater Sage Grouse Action Plan
Joint Assurance of Implementation Letter from NRCS and Forest Service Chiefs to USFWS Director (PDF, 1.4MB)
NRCS Proposal to Implement Bi-State Sage-Grouse Action Plan (PDF, 1.7MB)
Forest Service Bi-State Greater Sage-Grouse Habitat Restoration 10-Year Work Plan (PDF, 1.5MB)
Initiative Data For FY 2010 - 2011(opens in new tab)